Readers will perhaps be aware by now that I am more in favour of the monitoring of home education than some home educators and former home educators. I also have an idea that there are types of abuse which might be easier to carry out against children who are not attending school. Even I gasped though, when I read the following on the website of the South West Safeguarding and Child Protection Group (is it me, or does this have a faintly sinister ring about?)
Anyway, the South West Safeguarding and Child Protection Group have identified a number of dangers to children, which they discuss here:
One observes that Elective Home Education is listed as a child protection concern, coming immediately before Exploitation and Trafficking of Children, Female Genital Mutilation and Forced Marriage. This is very irritating. Don’t take my word for it; read it for yourselves. Some of the concerns that they cite around home education are frankly ludicrous. Take this one, for example:
Children who are home educated may be taught by other adults. Not all parents will exercise their responsibility to ensure that employment checks, including CRB checks have been carried out.
There is huge industry in providing tutoring for schoolchildren, aimed at getting them up to scratch for entrance examinations, GCSEs and A levels. Home educating parents are probably a good deal less likely to be using services such as these anyway, but if the concern is that tutors without CRB checks are gaining access to children, then they should start with the main bulk of such teaching, which is, as I say, undertaken with schoolchildren. A complete red herring.
If I lived in Devon or Somerset, I would be inclined to be a little annoyed at this sort of nonsense. On a slightly more pedantic note, I would be angry that a publicly funded body of this sort were using ‘safeguarding’ as a gerund verb. This is unforgivable and deserves the strictest censure.